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SkS Weekly Digest #13

Posted on 29 August 2011 by John Hartz

SkS Highlights

Skeptical Science celebrated its 4th birthday on August 22. Since its humble beginnings in John Cook's garage, it has grown into a internationally-recognized site for quality information about the science of climate change. Hats off to John Cook and his team of intrepid authors.

Toon of the Week 


The Week in Review

A list of aticles posted on SkS during the past week. 

  • Mythic Reasoning about Climate Uncertainty by Muoncounter
  • Climate Sensitivity: Feedbacks Anyone? by James Wright  
  • Climate Ethics: What Can Science Tell Us? by Grypo  
  • ConCERN Trolling on Cosmic Rays, Clouds, and Climate Change by Thingsbreak  
  • Lessons from Past Climate Predictions: IPCC FAR by Dana  
  • OA not OK part 20: SUMMARY 2/2 by Doug Mackie  
  • OA not OK part 19: SUMMARY 1/2 by Doug Mackie  
  • Republican Presidential Candidates vs. Climate Science by Dana  
  • Skeptical Science celebrates its 4th birthday by John Cook  
  • Tar Sands Impact on Climate Change by Dana 
  • Coming Soon...

    A list of articles that are in the pipeline. Most, but not necessarily all, will be posted on SkS during the course of the coming week. 

    • Mythic reasoning about uncertainty by muoncounter
    • CO2 is just a trace gas by Sarah
    • Lessons from Past Predictions: IPCC SAR  by Dana
    • Michaels Mischief #2: Opposting Climate Solutions by Dana
    • Not so Permanent Permafrost by Agnostic
    • "Been There, Done That" (NSF Inspector General's report on Michael Mann) by Alex C
    • Greenhouse Gas: It's not just about CO2 by Mythago
    • Treehugger Video #6 by John Cook

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    Printable Version  |  Link to this page


    Comments 1 to 11:

    1. I love these "toons of the week". Moderators may we please have a link to all of them like there is to the graphics?? The graphics are powerful ways of communicating the message of the science but the toons are, sometimes, an even more powerful and quite "disarming" way to rebut the denialists without the aggravation and confrontation that frequently ensues.
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    2. Sad and funny at the same time.
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    3. @Mark Harrignton #1: Thanks for the positive feedback. I'll forward your request that SkS create a "Toon Gallery" to our Grand Poopah, John Cook.
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      Moderator Response: [Dikran Marsupial] I think "poobah" was the word you were looking for! ;o)
    4. Grand Poopah is no doubt the title my wife & I will be giving Mini-Composer once he's born.
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    5. The climate graphics are owned by John and other contributors and are provided with a creative commons license so that they can be legally used elsewhere. The same wouldn't apply to cartoons, SkS would have no rights to distribute them unless they were created by John or other contributors.
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      [DB] Perhaps thumbnails hotlinked back to the originals?  You lawyers out there, what say thee?

    6. @Paul D Help me understand why this might be an issue? I can copy them now from the image above - just as I could from any of the other pages on which they exist. I do not understand how having a single page that looks like the graphics page with a thumbnail to all the comics is any different to being able to right click on them as now - I very much doubt having such comics embedded comprises "unlicensed distribution" - or if it does then the comic above is also in breach? Unless I'm missing something?
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    7. The graphics provided by John and others are licensed for general use in presentations and anything I think. This is possible because John and others are the authors of the works. If you make use the cartoon above, you would need to check the license. I don't know what that is. The owner of a 'property' decides how it can be used. The issue isn't the ability to copy, the issue is the intent of the owner or author. That is the same throughout all copyright law. Ease of copying doesn't give you any rights to copy.
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    8. Added: If you scroll to the bottom of the climate graphics page at the time I am posting this, the graphics are 'published' using this creative commons license: This is only possible because John and other SkS authors are the authors.
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    9. @Paul D, Thanks but that really doesn't seem to have any bearing on their use on this site. They are used now as per above. The use I was proposing seems little different with respect to any licensing issues. If you think it DOES make a difference would you please explain how?
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    10. I think the problem is that people may be led into thinking that the same license would apply to the toons. SkS might be accused of promoting copyright infringement. It might be a grey area as far as the law is concerned. The context in which they are used is important and conveys a message or an intent. In fact some image libraries insist that images from the same library can not be grouped together on a single page. Context, presentation and the impression given is all important.
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    11. Thanks Paul, It would be good to get a considered legal opinion on this (or are you qualified?) but I can understand the issue you raise. I do however see a potential solution. If the issue is "intention" as conveyed by context, presentation and impression as you argue then tt may still be possible to have all the toons grouped together under a single heading provided there was a suitable explanation which made it clear that the intent was not to promote any copyright infringement. This could be further enhanced by making the thumbnails on such a page link to the original source material rather than to the image itself. Up to the moderators to work it out I suppose but seems a pity not to provide such an excellent source to useful material.
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